April 27, 2017 / 12:00 PM / 3 years ago

Sri Lankan shares hit near 7-mth closing high on foreign buying

COLOMBO, April 27 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed at a near seven-month high in heavy trading on Thursday as foreign buying for 25 sessions in a row took net inflows into equities to 13.1 billion rupees ($86.1 million) and boosted sentiment.

Foreign investors bought shares worth 810 million rupees on a net basis in the session, bringing the year-to-date net equity inflows to 14.7 billion rupees.

The Colombo stock index gained 0.85 percent at 6,571.65, its highest close since Oct.7.

The index has climbed 10 percent in the 20 sessions through Thursday, having risen for 17 sessions in that period.

It added 2.1 percent last week, marking its fourth week of gains.

“Foreign buying is now spreading to some other counters from John Keells. Foreigners see value in these stocks and local investors have been waiting for investor confidence,” said Hussain Gani, deputy CEO at Softlogic Stockbrokers.

Turnover stood at 1.84 billion rupees, more than double of this year’s daily average of 894.2 million rupees.

Market heavyweight John Keells Holdings gained 1.8 percent, while top lender Commercial Bank of Ceylon rose 1.9 percent. ($1 = 152.1000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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